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Seared hanger steak with roasted sweet peppers and basil

June 4, 2010

Sometimes when i write ideas and recipes for this website i plan what i want to say for a long time. Other times, as with this recipe, something simply comes to me in the course of an afternoon. Today I went to the butcher shop and bought a nice looking piece of beef. Then I went to the vegetable shop and bought some cheap sweet peppers and some basil. I know how to cook beef, I know how to roast peppers, I know how to eat basil, an amazing meal is born.

The ingredients you will need for this dish are:

– A nice piece of beef, about 6-8 ounces per person.

– sweet peppers, about one and a half medium sized peppers per person.

– a few leaves of basil per person

– salt

– olive oil

– Chili flake or black pepper

To make the peppers for this dish you have to have a gas stove. Electric will not work, but you can also make this dish by grilling the peppers and the steak using all the same steps. Put some sweet or bell peppers onto your stove with the heat turned on high. Let the flames lick up the sides of the peppers. The goal is to burn all of the skin of the pepper. Let the peppers sit in the heat for a good minute or two before turning. Once they start turning black, turn them. Continue until all the skin of your peppers is black. This should take 4-8 minutes. When they are done set them aside to rest. When the peppers are cool enough to touch run them under the tap and rinse the blackened skin away. If all the skin did not get blackened it will be harder to remove, but it’s okay if your peppers have a few stray bits of the skin. When they are mostly cleaned, cut out the tops and the seeds then cut the flesh into strips and set them in a bowl with a little drizzle of olive oil and Put it aside. now the meat.
I picked hanger steak because it is a nice tender cut that can be cooked without having to be finished in the oven. It is June in New York and it’s too hot to turn on the oven. Put a pan on the stove on a medium to high heat and let it get nice and hot. Let it sit for about a minute and a half on the heat to make sure it is plenty hot. When it seems pretty hot add a decent drizzle of oil in the pan and let it lightly coat the bottom. Take your cut of meat, pat it dry with a paper towel, then give it a generous dusting of salt. put it in the hot pan and give it a god sear. Once the meat is in the pan you can turn the heat down to a medium or medium low. Turning the heat down will prevent the pan from smoking/burning and allow the meat too cook a little more thoroughly while it sears. Turn it onto each side until it is seared all around.  You can leave it in the pan until it reaches your desired temperature, turning occasionally to cook it evenly on all sides. I recommend Medium rare. You can use an internal read thermometer or you can use this simple guide for telling doneness of meat. When it is ready, set the meat aside to rest for at least five minutes.
While the meat rests finish your peppers. Take some freshly washed basil and pick all the small leaves and add to the peppers, then take all the big leaves and tear them into smaller pieces. The smell of roasted peppers with fresh basil is borderline euphoric. Add a pinch of salt and some chili flakes or black pepper and toss them all together with your hand. Taste. You can add more salt, oil, pepper or basil if you like. After five minutes you can plate your peppers, slice your steak and serve. You can serve it with rice, tacos or some warm pitas if you like. Enjoy.

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